New Sacco to give out Cheap loans in Hoima

The newly launched KASSOBA SACCO is on course to open with offers of cheap loans to members of Kabalega Secondary School Old Boys Association (KASSOBA).

The official launch was on April 3 at Kolping hotel in the western Hoima town.

According to Samuel Mugisa, the interim chairperson of KASSOBA SACCO, the old boys resolved to form the SACCO in 2018 during the annual general meeting.

“The SACCO was supposed to kick off in 2020 but we were disorganized by COVID-19. But when we met again in March this year we resolved to start,” Mugisa said.

He said the SACCO has 90 registered members already and hopes to shore up the numbers to 300 members within the next two years.

“Members are buying each share at Shs 20,000. Saving has also commenced, we hope to have saved at least Shs 500 million in two years. This is going to be the ladder to the members’ economic development,” Mugisa said.

“Many of our boys have lost properties due to the high interest rates from banks and financial institutions but I am optimistic that with this SACCO, our members will be able to access loans at an affordable interest rate. We want our SACCO to be vibrant like the (army’s) Wazalendo SACCO,” he stressed.

Mugisa said in the future they will allow outsiders to access conditional loans.

“Worldwide SACCOs have been the engine of development and many people have prospered through them,” he added.

In a speech at the SACCO launching, John Tumusiime, the district commercial officer of Hoima, took members through the process of forming, sustaining, and developing a SACCO.

“If your SACCO is to move from one level to another, you have to be with a transparent leadership and also ensure that record-keeping and accountability are key. Also never leave the entire burden to the leadership. You members always participate in the day-to-day SACCO activities,” he noted.

The old boys also elected an interim committee to steer the SACCO. Samuel Mugisa is the chairperson deputized by David Muhumuza. Charles Baisa is the treasurer, Alfred Kusiima is the general secretary and Ronald Murungi is a mobilizer.

KASSOBA, which formed the SACCO was started by the old boys of Kabalega Secondary School in the western district of Masindi in the 1980s.

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Long-dormant sacco in Masindi bounces back

A long-dormant savings and cooperative credit society has been revived.

The Masindi Savings and Cooperative Credit Society Limited has been revived by members after a two-year lull.

The SACCO membership comprises mainly active and retired civil servants of the Masindi district local government.

On April 1, Moses Kalyegira, the Masindi district commercial officer, convened a special general meeting that elected a new board.

Addressing the meeting at the council chambers, Kalyegira said the SACCO had been dormant for two years because the board chairperson resigned under unclear circumstances. After her resignation other board and SACCO members lost interest in the association, Kalyegira said.

“This is a special meeting because the board has failed to perform its duties. I have engaged the former chairperson Ruth Kisakye three times to convene a meeting so she could hand it over officially but in vain. I have decided that I chair this meeting so that the SACCO can put in place a new board to start conducting business because the business couldn’t go on without signatories,” he explained.

Kalyegira said he convened the meeting because he couldn’t just sit and let the SACCO collapse. He wondered why SACCOs of people with little financial knowledge were thriving and theirs full of professionals in finance was limping.

“People have been unable to access services and yet they have money on the SACCO account because board members lost interest. Let’s forget that and start a new chapter today. I have been receiving many complaints from members about their money being idle in the bank and being deducted,” Kalyegira said.

The outgoing board treasurer, Charles Musinguzi, and the vice-chairperson Godfrey Baharagate attended the meeting.

According to Kalyegira, the SACCO, which started in 2003, at one time had about 300 members before those numbers dropped to just 100 active members currently.

“The purpose of its formation was to enhance a saving culture amongst members and to offer loans at a low-interest rate to civil servants,” he noted.

Charles Musinguzi, the outgoing treasurer told members that Shs 20 million was loaned out. He said the SACCO has Shs 6.5 million on the account. He also said there’s a time savings totaled Shs 70 million.

“Some people are willing to pay back our money but they have not done so because we have not been active. This is the time to forget the past and set a new agenda,” Musinguzi said.

He said some monies may be difficult to recover.

“The mode of recovery and saving was an automatic deduction from the salaries. Recovering this money might also be a challenge because some civil servants no longer work with us,” he said.

Elections

During the elections presided over by Moses Kalyegira, Ibrahim Nasur, the senior assistant secretary for the Kyatiri town council, was elected as the board chairperson, Charles Musinguzi, the retired personnel officer, is the new secretary and Patrick Okise, the principal internal auditor, is the treasurer.

Other board members include; Prudence Alituha, the principal fisheries officer, Godfrey Bahemuka, the district community development officer, James Mugoya, the lands officer, and Oliver Mabeho, a teacher.

The supervisory committee has David Baguma, the chief finance officer, as its chairperson while Joseph Kabubi and Mary Birungi were elected as members.

In his inaugural speech, Ibrahim Nasur said, “I am one of the people who had lost interest. This is a SACCO for technocrats. How can it fail?”

“My first agenda is to ensure that people’s money is recovered. I will also follow up to see whether the money deducted automatically for saving and repayment is remitted to the SACCO,” he stressed.

Patrick Okise, the new treasurer, urged people who had lost interest to come back.

“We need to wake up now and revive this SACCO because it can give us loans at a low interest. Every day we are exploited by banks and other financial institutions who give us loans at over 40% interest and yet we can do it ourselves at a low interest. We need to wake up now.”Okise said.

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Cooperative slashes fees to attract new members

To shore up its numbers, Lira Diocese Multipurpose Cooperative Society Limited has slashed its membership fee from Shs 50,000 to Shs 30,000 to encourage registration of new members with minimal fees.

In a speech at the recent annual general meeting (AGM) held at the Apostolic Social Centre in Lira City, Cyprian Okello, the cooperative’s vice-chairperson, said many people had failed to register because they couldn’t afford the registration fee of Shs 50,000.

“We are forming the central mobilization committee. We shall ensure that each and every parish forms a mobilization committee that will include the catechist, parish priest, and the key people to strengthen mobilization, we want people everybody to understand the benefit of joining a cooperative,” he said.

So far the cooperative has 150 members. It was formed by Sanctus Lino Wanok, the Bishop of Lira Diocese in 2019, to improve the livelihoods of Christians in the nine districts of the Lango sub-region.

Patrick Vincent Muge, a member of the cooperative, said to succeed, the cooperative should engage only able and willing people to carry out Sacco activities.

Muge also urged the leadership to carry out more mobilization of Sacco members.

Father John Bosco Oryema, a member of Alito Catholic parish was excited by the reduction of the membership fees, saying it will encourage women to participate in the cooperative.

“The reduction will give avenues for women to join the cooperative, most women spend their money on running the day-to-day family affairs but now the fee reduction is an open chance for them to join the cooperate and save money to grow,” he noted.

Rt. Rev. Sanctus Lino Wanok, the founder of the cooperative, rallied the public to join the cooperative to alleviate poverty.

“Due to the coronavirus pandemic that negatively affected businesses, the time is now for people to head towards a direction that will make them easily assist one another, cooperate in business enterprises and alleviate poverty,” he said.

The man of God nudged the clergy to mobilize the community to join the cooperative to increase household income and improve their livelihoods.

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Nine SACCOs cleared to receive Emyooga funds in Masindi

Nine out of 54 SACCOs in Masindi district have been cleared to receive the long-awaited Emyooga cash, Moses Kalyegira, Masindi district’s Commercial Officer has revealed.

Kalyegira says the nine, which hail from the three constituencies of Masindi municipality, Bujenje county, and Buruli had met all the requirements for receiving the money and had already received Shs 132m so far.

The DCO was responding to widespread complaints by several SACCOs over delayed disbursement of the promised Emyooga cash, with many reporting that they had started receiving the money on their accounts in December but were unable to access it.

“Clearing of SACCOs is still ongoing; they could not all be cleared at the same time,” Kalyegira explained.

He went on to list the other obstacles standing in the way of some SACCOs’ receiving the money.

“You should know that you must have saved 30% of the money you are asking for. Also, the bank has to clear the resolutions by the SACCO before giving you the money. The bank’s legal team has to look into them and send them to the ministry of trade for verification before giving you a go-ahead to withdraw the money,” said Kalyegira.

The official handover of the money was launched by Masindi Resident District Commissioner (RDC), Rose Kirabira, who warned the beneficiaries against misusing the funds.

“I advise you to use this capital to move out of poverty and also develop the culture of saving. This is a push-up for your SACCOs but not money for eating,” Kirabira said.

She also encouraged the beneficiaries to report any individuals engaged in mismanaging the SACCOs’ monies so that action can be taken against them.

Cate Gafa, the Masindi Municipality Town Clerk, implored the members to use the money effectively to enable them to attract more support from the government.

“This can only be achieved when there is a good saving culture and financial discipline,” she cautioned.

The beneficiaries who turned up for the launch expressed happiness, saying they had lost hope in the program.

“Some members had even threatened to withdraw their savings because they were not seeing any future in staying with the program,” explained a beneficiary who spoke on condition of anonymity.

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Co-operators condemn ‘confused’ regulatory regime

Co-operators in Western Uganda have condemned what some referred to as a “confused” regulatory regime resulting from the enactment of various laws meant to regulate the operation of cooperatives, SACCOS in particular, within the country.

The co-operators expressed their discontent during a regional forum on the changing regulatory environment for SACCOs in Uganda. The forum, which was held on Wednesday last week, brought together more than 100 leaders of cooperatives in Western Uganda, including board members, supervisory committee members, members of vetting committees, and other management staff.

According to Dr. Sylvester Ndiroramukama, Chief Executive Officer, Uganda Co-operative Savings and Credit Union (UCSCU), the discussion focused on how to harmonize the different regulations that affect the operations of SACCOs in Uganda.

“We want to bring to the attention of our members the implications of the regulations in the gazetted various sections of the Cooperative Societies Act and the Tier IV Microfinance Institutions and Moneylenders Act, 2016,” Ndiroramukama explained.

Besides the Cooperative Societies Act Cap. 112 by which all cooperatives are governed, SACCOs are now also governed by the Tier IV Microfinance and MoneyLenders Act, 2016, and the Microfinance Deposit-Taking Institutions Act, 2003.

The law further subjects SACCOs to the governance of-the Uganda Microfinance Regulatory Agency (UMRA) and Bank of Uganda, by which they are required to be licensed, in addition to being under the oversight of the Registrar of Cooperative Societies, under the Ministry of Trade Industry and Cooperatives (MTIC).

“Suffocating cooperatives”

Elaborating on the regulatory situation of SACCOs in Uganda, participants at the forum argued that the stringent regulations subjecting the sector to a variety of actors could have the effect of “suffocating” cooperatives.

Ndiroramukama says that as co-operators, they are advocating for a single regulator for the sector, and an independent authority in charge of licensing, regulating, and supervising SACCOs.

“We don’t care who that single regulator would be but what we want is for the SACCOs to enjoy the benefits of backward and forward linkages,” he said.

Ndiroramukama anticipates the collapse of several SACCOs in the country if the issue of multiple regulations in the sector is not sorted out in time.

“Definitely if the status quo remains, SACCOs will die and this is why we are bringing it to the attention of the government that the current laws conflict against each other,” Ndiroramukama said.

Stephen Bongonzya, the vice-chairman of UCSCU, revealed that the different regulators are jostling for control over SACCOS, something he thinks could be injurious to the cooperatives. He too believes the legal regime as it is could spell disaster for some SACCOs.

“The Microfinance Deposit-Taking Institutions Act regulates companies meaning that some of the SACCOs that cross will automatically become companies, and you can never be allowed to slide back. In case of issues, Bank of Uganda will either advise you to merge, be bought or end up collapsing, which is the reason we are insisting that they remain as SACCOs,” Bongonzya explained.

Sort us out, or else…

Some of the attendees at the forum threatened to stage a strike if the law is not rectified to have a single regulator for all cooperatives.

“We had several discussions and made recommendations, but our submissions were not considered when amending the Act? Are we now orphans? If we don’t have any ministry that is concerned for our affairs, this is the right time to start a strike to retain our identity as SACCOs,” a tough-talking staffer of Kitaga SACCO fumed.

However, the CEO of UCSCU, urged the co-operators to desist from any talk of violence, saying they will use non-violent processes to bring about the desired harmony within the cooperative laws.

“We are not going to strike because as co-operators we don’t believe in violence; we are democratic and law-abiding institutions, which is why we use the approach of engaging and petitioning, which doesn’t involve using excessive force or violence,” Ndiroramukama said.

Rev. Can. Duncans Mugumya, the Board Chairman, Jubilee SACCO (West Ankole Diocese), also urged calm, calling instead for engagement with lawmakers, saying, “The existing law was passed by human beings and can just as well be changed be the same.”

Prominent among the issues raised by participants were the number of licensing and supervisory agencies, and the mix-up of funds, among others. that were petitioned to the speaker of parliament.

The UCSCU officials reported that they had petitioned Parliament about the issues of concern to cooperatives.

“We have raised the contradictions with the Office of the Speaker of Parliament through a petition, and she has already written to the relevant committees of ministries to ensure that they harmonize these inconsistencies in the two laws,” Bongonzya said.

Spilled milk

However, a cross-section of the co-operators in attendance likened their peers’ complaints to crying over spilled milk, saying the time for protest is now long past, given that the offending law is already in place.

“I think we should comply with the law. We should have defied when it was still in preparation, but now that it’s already amended it’s a challenge to overcome. We can instead adopt amicable means to resolve the gaps within it,” argued Charles Muramuzi, one of the participants.

Muramuzi also opined that some of the resistance to the new legal regime is born of fear by SACCOs that have till now been non-compliant with existing regulation.

“The problem is that we are fearing change vis-à-vis compliance because these new regulations are very strict with regard to compliance, and yet we are not doing what we are supposed to be doing as SACCOs. But if we accept these laws, then we can benchmark and grow like any other successful cooperatives,” he said.

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Kakumiro bee farmers resolve to form SACCO

Bee farmers in Kakumiro district have resolved to form a SACCO in a bid to address some of the challenges they face in their enterprise.

According to Joseph Serugo, a bee farmer and conservationist with Kayirebwa Chimpanzee Conservancy, since 2010 he and other farmers have been using traditional methods to make beehives and process their honey, but they want to adopt modern ones come April.

In addition, the farmers intend to set up a SACCO with a central collection point where members can bulk their honey that they would then sell at a fair price.

“Plans are in high gear to organize for the modern beehives and establish a SACCO so that things like marketing improve. We are currently earning very little for our honey,” Serugo told theCooperator.

“We are currently earning very little for our honey,” Serugo told the Cooperator.

Serugo, who says he currently earns about Shs 500,000 each season from honey, believes the increased investment in the business will attract more customers and boost his earnings.

Sarah Katono, also a bee farmer and member of the same group, says a SACCO would save them from having to borrow from external lenders who tend to levy prohibitively high-interest rates.

“I want to be able to purchase machines to harvest wax from my bees and add value to it by making items like candles. I am unable to do that currently because the money I get is not enough,” Katono said.

She also hopes that the SACCO can help members push for better honey prices and improve their livelihood.

“I sell my honey at between Shs 5,000- Shs 10,000 to middlemen and also individual customers who buy for their own consumption but I would like to earn more from it,” she said.

Meanwhile, William Lalobo, a private conservationist at Aswa Falls Conservancy and a beekeeper, plans to extract bee venom for export.

“I have already received the machines and will soon begin extraction of the venom,” Lalobo says.

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Masindi women tipped on growing their SACCOs, SMEs

Women belonging to different women’s SACCOs and savings groups, as well as owners of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Masindi district have been trained on how to manage and grow then from one level to the next.

The one-day training was conducted by the All-in-One Women’s Association (ALOWA) at Kolping hotel in Masindi on Wednesday.

Godfrey Bahemuka, the Masindi district Community Development Officer (CDO), sensitized participants on the processes and procedures of forming SACCOs and savings groups, and on the roles of the elected leaders.

“As members, you should always know the vision, mission, and objectives of your groups and SACCOs. Most of you don’t know these things and yet they are key. That’s why many of your groups and SACCOs don’t last,” explained Bahemuka.

He also underscored the need for proper record keeping in all organizations involved in savings and credit, noting that this documentation is necessary for accountability.

The members were also taken through group conflict management and basic financial literacy.

Bahemuka also advised the leaders of different women groups to make use of the available government programs like the Uganda Women Entrepreneurship Program (UWEP) and Emyooga to get capital for their businesses.

Unite purposefully

Lilian Namirimu, the Executive Director, ALOWA urged women to unite with a purpose, and not only plan to come together when the government is planning to give out funds.

” As women, we need to work together and not in isolation. We shall achieve our targets if we are united,” Namirimu said, adding that unity would give them greater bargaining power in lobbying for their interests.

Namirimu said the association decided to extend this training to women because of the important role they play in promoting social and economic development.

Florence Achiro, the Chairperson, Women of Worth Catering Group, commended ALOWA for organizing the training.

“The knowledge we have acquired will enable us to improve on the management of our groups and businesses.”

Stella Alinaitwe from Masindi Central Market Vendors SACCO appealed for further training opportunities from other organizations.

“We really have inadequate knowledge on how to run these SACCOs. We need more training like this to equip us with the necessary information to grow our SACCOs and businesses.”

The meeting was attended by market vendors, produce dealers, and women leaders, among others.

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Masindi Crime Preventers form SACCO

Crime preventers in Masindi district have formed a SACCO as one way of improving their economic status.

According to Musa Kabalega, the Chairperson Tukurakuranize Saving and Credit Society Limited, they formed the SACCO on the advice of President Yoweri Museveni.

“We got this idea from the president who advised us to form a SACCO to enable us to get support from the government. He was addressing us at Lugogo cricket Oval in 2018 and pledged to support every SACCO with Shs 100 million,” said Kabalega.

Museveni has on several occasions encouraged Ugandans to form SACCOs through which they can be supported financially by the government.

To date, the 125-member SACCO has received Shs 10 million from the government, which it has started loaning out to members.

Kabalega, who also doubles as the Regional Coordinator for Crime Preventers in Bunyoro sub Region, has big plans for the future.

“Our dream is to open up a SACCO in at least in every sub-county. We have crime preventers in every village and this will help our members benefit from government and also develop a savings culture,” he said.

Masindi district has four divisions, four town councils, and 10 sub-counties and Kabalega says that have crime preventers in all of them. This implies that 18 Crime Preventers’ SACCOs could potentially be opened up across the district.

Training needed

Kabalega also appealed to relevant organizations and government to equip them with knowledge on how to run SACCOs noting that most of them have inadequate knowledge on the daily activities of SACCOs.

“Many SACCOs and Cooperatives are failing to thrive because both leaders and members are lacking the necessary knowledge. The training we get from our district officials is inadequate since they don’t give us enough time; it would be good if other organizations and the ministry in charge of cooperatives could also come in,” he said.

About Crime Preventers

According to Human Rights Watch, Crime preventers are “a volunteer force of civilians recruited and managed by police to report on and prevent crime in cooperation with the police and communities.”

The force was formed in 2013 and, at its height in the run-up to the 2016 Presidential elections, comprised of more than 1.5 million members, according to Police figures.

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One year later, Cooperatives struggling to emerge from COVID-induced slump

Almost a year after Uganda first imposed several restrictions aimed at combating the spread of COVID-19, many cooperatives are still struggling to get back to their feet despite being open for business for many months now.

In a series of interviews with leaders of top cooperative societies in Western Uganda, theCooperator has learnt that for most of them business remains slow, while others totter on the leeway side of collapse.

Edmond Sajabi, the Manager Kakoba-Mbarara SACCO reports that a stock-taking of the past year indicates that the economic impact of the pandemic hampered the performance of SACCOs.

“Remember, during the total lockdown, restrictions on movement meant that most of our members could not report to their cooperative premises to save, resulting in a reduction in savings,” he said.

A moratorium on most businesses also meant that members who had taken out loans were unable to pay up since they were not working anymore.

“The closure of businesses led to increased defaulting on loans and low loan recovery. For instance, schools were closed yet the operators had acquired loans. This means the amount of interest they had to pay also increased and yet they were not in position to do so,”

Citing the case of Kakoba-Mbarara SACCO, Sajabi revealed that the financial cooperative only managed to collect only Shs 609m in total savings.

“We had estimated that we would collect savings totalling to 649 million but by the end of 2020, we only managed to get 609 million. Our loan portfolio target was 1.5 billion but we only realised 1.2 billion at the end of the financial year because people were not taking loans; businesses were closed and you could not risk giving a person who is not working a loan,” said Sajabi.

The veteran co-operator predicts that the liquidity constraints facing SACCOs in the wake of the COVID-induced slump will force some to close in the years to come.

“Some cooperatives no longer have the capital to meet operational expenses such as rent and staff salaries, which directly affects the workers. Others have even terminated their employees’ contracts,” Sajabi said.

John Rutakirwa, Operations Manager at BESANIA SACCO, confirmed that the closure of businesses due to the pandemic injured most cooperatives in Mbarara.

“Cooperatives entirely depend on their members for financing, so when most of the businesses closed it left most of the cooperative societies in a liquidity crisis,” Rutakirwa said.

Rutakirwa revealed that BESANIA SACCO had not emerged unscathed from the pandemic, registering a 60% increase in default rate due to hiccups being faced by members’ businesses.

He appreciated government’s decision to gradually loosen restrictions on businesses, thereby allowing cooperative activities to resume.

Mzee Eliezar Ariho, a farmer, told theCooperator that COVID-19 had affected his savings momentum with EBO SACCO in Mbarara.

“I used to save over two hundred thousand shillings per day from my farm, but since February 2020 I rarely take my money to the SACCO. I even fear to apply for a loan because the little we get now is only for survival,” he says.

Ariho adds that the drastic drop in crop prices during the pandemic had stifled his dream of expanding his banana plantation into a model farm in Mbarara district.

“It’s not that I lacked the expertise, but how would you improve on the plantation when a bunch of bananas costs three thousand shillings? How would you improve the dairy farm when Kenya blocked the exportation of cattle products from Uganda?” he asks.

Yosia Bagabo, Chairman, Kabura farmers’ Co-operative society, says attributes the low milk prices during COVID-19 to closure of borders, thereby affecting access to neighbouring markets like Kenya.

“The first lockdown affected us so much because we were stuck with 60,000 litres of milk which we used to supply to Pearl Dairies every day. Given that borders were closed, they stopped taking our milk for almost 10 days, causing losses to our dairy farmers and exploitation by private buyers and middle men because they had no alternative of selling that milk on a large scale,” Bagabo explained.

Hope of recovery

Nevertheless, co-operators are hopeful that with the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, sanity within the sector has started to be restored.

“Since May 2020, there has been a notable improvement especially in terms of loan recovery that stands at 65% unlike in March, April, and May 2020 when we only secured 12%,” Sajabi said, in reference to Kakoba-Mbarara SACCO, adding:

“People are now coming to save, get loans and new members opening accounts as well.”

He appealed to government to prioritise vaccination for businesses that have been adversely affected by the pandemic.

“Some of the closed businesses like schools should be allowed to vaccinate their pupils and students and open. Bars should also be allowed to resume operations,” Sajabi said.

He also proposed institution of a support fund for such businesses in addition to directing financial institutions to hold off on demanding loan repayments from them until they get back to their feet.

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Bwijanga Coffee Cooperative targets coffee processing machine

Bwijanga Coffee Cooperative Society Limited in Bwijanga Sub-county, Masindi district is in the process of acquiring a coffee processing machine that will enable them to add value to their coffee.

According to Benedicto Ssensaga the Chairperson, Bwijanga Coffee Cooperative Society Limited, the processing machine will be established in Kikingura village Kitamba parish Bwijanga sub-county.

“We are now going to benefit from our coffee because we going to add value to it instead of selling raw materials. We have enough coffee to feed the machine, and I am optimistic that our economic status is to change due to this investment,” he explained.

Ssensaga says that the members of the cooperative have a combined acreage of over 500 acres of coffee, a figure he predicts will rise even higher since they are still admitting more members.

MAAIF support

Ssensaga also revealed to theCooperator that the cooperative has secured the support of the Ministry of Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) towards its goal of acquiring the coffee processor.

“Last year, we were told that we would be supported under the Agriculture Cluster Development Program (ACDP). Under the matching grant, we were asked to contribute 33% of the price of the machine, which amounts to 75 million shillings, and the government promised to put up the remaining 230 million shillings,” said Ssensaga.

He explained that the coop’s contribution will be made in form of materials and land.

“We already have the land and have bought the necessary building materials,” he said, adding that they are now waiting for the relevant district officials to come and assess the situation on the ground.

“In the meantime, internally we are mobilizing our members to ensure that they solicit for the required money to bring the machine to our cooperative.”

Simon Wairima, the Cooperative Secretary, revealed that some of the necessities have been acquired, including a Tax Identification Number, Pro forma invoices from the machine supplier, and developing the farmers’ register.

Last Thursday, the concerned district officials and the cooperative’s leadership had a planning meeting on how to proceed.

About Bwijanga Coffee Coop

Founded in 2019, Bwijanga Coffee Cooperative Society Limited already has over 1000 active members drawn from the entire Bwijanga sub-county.

The same cooperative introduced a saving scheme last year that requires every member to buy a minimum of two shares, each at Shs 30,000.

Bwijanga Coffee Cooperative Society Limited is one of four active coffee cooperatives in Masindi district, the others being Karujubu Coffee Cooperative Society Limited, Pakanyi Coffee Cooperative Society Limited, and Alimugonza Coffee Cooperative Society Limited.

Coffee growing has picked up significantly throughout Masindi district following the distribution of coffee seedlings to farmers by the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) under Operation Wealth Creation (OWC).

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